Deforestation and Declining Biodiversity
Averaged over 2015 to 2017, global loss of tropical forests contributed about 4.8 billion tons of carbon dioxide per year, or about 8-10% of annual human emissions of carbon dioxide. A loss of forest cover also reduces the earth’s ability to absorb the vast amounts of greenhouse emissions created by human industry. In 2020, the tropics lost more than 12 million hectares of tree cover–that's roughly 30 soccer fields’ worth of trees every single minute.
Agriculture is a major driver of forest clearing for land and animal grazing. In addition to palm oil, soy, forest products (such as paper), and beef are responsible for approximately half of all tropical deforestation. The state of global forests is worsening, as demand for food commodities is expected to nearly double by 2050. Consumer brands often purchase commodity grains and oils but don’t manage land or raise animals, distancing them from the realities of deforestation.